Girl Guides love a challenge, and the biggest for local units at the moment is to raise enough money to attend an international camp in the U.K. this summer.
In addition to funding they expect from the local Girl Guides Association, they are asking island businesses and the public for donations.
Seven Girl Guides, including one from the Brac, each need to come up with $3,000 to attend the FLAME 2016 camp near Southampton, England. FLAME is held every four years.
The sum goes toward airfare, camp fees, pre- and post-camp accommodation, touring and travel. As of press time, $3,000 has been raised and is deposited in the Girl Guiding Cayman Islands account.
The camp, held at Foxlease, a mansion on 65 acres of countryside, runs from July 23-29.
Hundreds of sister Guides from across the globe will be in attendance, all intent on a week of fun and adventure. In addition to learning new skills, the Guides will have a chance to participate in a huge range of indoor and outdoor activities, many of which they may not have tried before.
“Attending FLAME 2016 will give Girl Guides from the Cayman Islands the opportunity to meet Guides from other parts of the world and take part in many once-in-a-lifetime opportunities and experiences,” said Allison Taylor, Island Commissioner and Guider of the 5th George Town unit.
“The girls will have experiences and develop skills which they will carry with them throughout their lives.”
She said that in representing the Cayman Islands, the Guides will put up an exhibit at FLAME to share information about the islands and local Guiding.
To help raise money and put activism into practice, the Guides have been busy since last December. So far they have organized a Christmas craft bazaar at St. Ignatius, manned a soft drinks stall at Pirates Week and are taking part in the Guiding the Way 5-10K Walk/Fun Run on Feb. 20, which is open to the public.
According to Taylor, as part of the 9,316 mile round trip, the Guides will tour London for a week following FLAME. The itinerary for that leg of the visit will include trips to Brownsea Island – the world’s first Scout camp – and to Pax Lodge, the world center of both the Girl Guides and the Boy Scouts.
Twelve-year-old Pippa-Grace Parker, a member of the 5th George Town unit, is among those planning to go on the trip.
“I really want to go to Flame 2016 because I want to have fun meeting Girl Guides from all over the world,” she said. “Guides is a time where I get to learn skills and share my experiences … where I get to give back to the world for all the amazing things it has given me, and I get to do it while having fun with my Girl Guides family.”
Girl Guides in Cayman has recently been re-energized with the formation of two new units.
In addition to the 5th George Town unit, Clifton Hunter and Cayman Brac units were set up last year to cater to growing demand in the eastern districts and in the larger Sister Island.
At their regular meetings, girls get involved in a broad range of community action projects, arts activities and sports.
They also get the opportunity to develop and extend their knowledge in many life skills by working toward badges.
To donate to the Cayman Islands Girl Guides trip to FLAME 2016, contact [email protected]
To learn more about the local units, or to volunteer, contact Miss Taylor via email. To find out more about the fun run, visit caymanactive.com/guiding.